Helping Kids Cope with Shared Custody
Child custody issues are probably the most heartbreaking and difficult aspects of ending a relationship. Both partners have invested so much love, time and resources into raising the children that the thought of tearing the family apart seems unbearable.
If the stress of ending a relationship is hard on the adults, it’s even more difficult for the children involved. When breaking up is the only option and you and your former partner choose shared custody, the family has to have coping strategies to help the children handle the changes as they occur.
Children are very aware of shifts in the family atmosphere, so major events such as one parent leaving the home will have a significant impact. Even if the changes are relatively small-for example, if one parent is moving very close by-kids will still feel a sense of upheaval and need lots of reassurance.
While open honest communication is the first line of attack against emotional trauma, there are other very practical ways to ease the transition.
One of the main strategies for helping children adjust to toggling between two homes and parents is to provide them with their own special space and belongings in each home.
For starters, they’ll need their own personal care items so that they can keep to their daily routines without interruption. Many parents like to take the children shopping for new clothes to keep at the second home as well.
Make sure they have a room where they can have privacy, keep their favorite toys and express their decorative creativity.
Children are resilient. While they may express anger, anxiety, and other stormy emotions at first, they will eventually respond to the love and consideration both of their parents provide for them as their newly structured family moves into the future.
You can learn more about Virginia’s child custody laws by visiting our article library.
At this vulnerable time, it’s critical that you have exceptional legal representation that not only understands the specifics of your case, but is dedicated to your best interests and that of your family.
The Virginia divorce attorneys at Hofheimer Family Law Firm represent Virginia women who wish to file for divorce. We are committed to fighting for your rights, assisting in child custody disputes, and ensuring that you receive everything you are entitled to and need in order to start your new life. You can learn more by requesting a FREE copy of our guide, What Every Virginia Woman Should Know About Divorce, or reserving your seat at our monthly divorce seminar – 757-425-5200.